Japanese suicide bombers attacked Ceylon on Easter Sunday on 5 April 1942. Sri Lanka was attacked again by suicide bombers on 21 April – Pic by Shehan Gunasekara
By Gajalakshmi Paramasivam
Time and place influence natural changes to the forms in which truth is manifested. Truth that happens at a particular place is naturally invoked positively or negatively by current generation when the mind is passive. Those living in the past usually have passive minds in terms of the present.
Yesterday I learnt about the Japanese suicide bombers who attacked Ceylon on Easter Sunday – 5 April 1942. Because Sri Lanka is my homeland, and because Easter is about resurrection, I felt a deeper connection between the 2019 Easter bombings and the 1942 Easter bombings.
There were many common features that would, I believe, help find a preventive pathway. In terms of karma – the cause and effect produce the common picture of truth – as if we are both in terms of time or place. The mind to which the whole of Sri Lanka is one place – would ‘see’ the time based connection:
[The Japanese attack began at 07:30 on Easter Sunday morning. Air defence of Colombo Fort and Harbour was provided by the 3rd Searchlight/Light Anti-Aircraft Regiment, Ceylon Garrison Artillery with two batteries based at Galle Face Green and Mutwal. Colonel R.M. White and his operations staff officer, Major J.O. Widdows, DSO commanded ground units from ground forces headquarters at Echelon Barracks.
St. Luke’s Church, Borella, was packed for Easter services with both locals and military personnel. According to parishioners, the vicar, Reverend Canon Ivan Corea, was preaching when the RAF Hurricanes engaged the Japanese Zero aircraft high above the church.
The Sri Lankan writer Ariyadasa Ratnasinghe recalled the Easter Sunday Japanese raid: “Japanese aircraft flew in close formation over Colombo and dropped bombs at different places. The air battle lasted for nearly half an hour. The Allied forces, warned of the danger, were able to shoot down some of the enemy aircraft which fell on land and sea.”
Among those shot down, one fell near St. Thomas’ College, one closer to the Bellanwila paddy fields, one near Pita Kotte, one on the racecourse in Colombo, one near Horana and one on the Galle Face Green. A bomb fell off the target and damaged the Mulleriyawa Mental Hospital, killing some inmates. It appeared that the pilot had mistaken the buildings for the Echelon Barracks. One fell near the Maradana Railway Station, partly damaging it. There were many deaths and more casualties, most of them civilians. To prevent bombs falling on hospitals, it was decided to have a large red cross painted on the roofs.
H. G. P. Jayasekera, President of the Ceylon War Veterans Association of World War II, wrote: “The April raids in Colombo were led by Vice Admiral Chuichi Nagumo and Commander Mitsuo Fuchida, the two men who inflicted the biggest damage on the mighty American Pacific Fleet. The Ceylon R.A.F. had only 20 planes as against that of 120 planes of Mitsuo Fuchida. These 20 fighter planes got off from the Racecourse grounds and there was an air battle over Colombo on Easter Sunday morning (5 April). Ceylon Garrison Artillery and Boys of Royal Artillery managed to shoot down many of the Japanese planes.”
The Ceylon Daily News reported the raid on Monday, 6 April 1942: “Colombo and the suburbs were attacked yesterday at 8 o’clock in the morning by 75 enemy aircraft which came in waves from the sea. Twenty-five of the raiders were shot down, while 25 more were damaged. Dive-bombing and low-flying machine-gun attacks were made in the Harbour and Ratmalana areas. A medical establishment in the suburbs was also bombed] Wikipedia
To my mind the following is more significant in working out the karmic connection:
[On 9 April, the Japanese attacked the harbour at Trincomalee and the British ships off Batticaloa. The light aircraft carrier HMS Hermes, the destroyer HMAS Vampire and the Flowerclass corvette HMS Hollyhock were sunk, and SS Sagaing partially destroyed and set on fire below decks. The RAF lost at least eight Hurricanes and the FAA one Fairey Fulmar. The Japanese lost five bombers and six fighters, one in a suicide attack on the Trincomalee fuel tanks. Seven hundred people lost their lives in the attack on Trincomalee. According to eye witness Michael Tomlinson (author of The Most Dangerous Moment and RAF Station Intelligence Officer at Ratmalana and later at China Bay in Trincomalee), one Japanese pilot deliberately crashed his plane into one of the giant fuel tanks just north of China Bay aerodrome. Inside the aircraft were three Japanese—Shigenori Watanabe, Tokya Goto, and Sutomu Toshira. After carefully circling the area, they plunged unerringly into the tank, igniting their own funeral pyre. The resulting fire lasted seven days. Parts of the aircraft’s engine and the flattened remains of the fuel storage tank have been placed in a barbed wire enclosure 1½ km from the turn off at the 4th mile post on the Trincomalee–Habarana Road.] Wikipedia
Japanese were foreigners to Ceylon. They bombed Ceylon due to British presence there. The significance of Ceylon – a tiny island is presented by Wikipedia as follows:
[Churchill quote on the Battle of Ceylon – Prime Minister Winston Churchill said:
The most dangerous moment of the War, and the one which caused me the greatest alarm, was when the Japanese Fleet was heading for Ceylon and the naval base there. The capture of Ceylon, the consequent control of the Indian Ocean, and the possibility at the same time of a German conquest of Egypt would have closed the ring and the future would have been black.
— From a conversation at the British Embassy, Washington, D.C.]
The Easter Sunday 2019 bombings were also by mental foreigners. Back then the Japanese targeted fuel tanks in the south and east and also accidentally bombed the Mental Hospital in the Colombo suburb of Angoda:
[The first attack wave of Japanese planes took off in pre-dawn darkness (30 minutes before sunrise) from the aircraft carriers Akagi, Hiryu, and Soryu, moving about 200 miles south of Sri Lanka. The first attack wave of 36 fighters, 54 dive bombers, and 90 level bombers was led by Captain Mitsuo Fuchida, the same officer who led the air attack on Pearl Harbor.
The Hawker Hurricanes of the RAF’s No. 30 Squadron were on the ground at Ratmalana Airport when the Japanese aircraft passed overhead. The auxiliary cruiser HMS Hector and the old destroyer HMS Tenedos were sunk in the harbour. The RAF and the Fleet Air Arm (FAA) lost at least 27 aircraft; the Japanese only five. The Japanese also bombed the mental asylum at Angoda, mistaking it for the fuel tanks at nearby Kolonnawa.
After Fuchida and his aircrews returned to the flagship Akagi, a second-wave of 53 Aichi D3A Val dive bombers led by Lieutenant Commander Egusa took off to attack the two British cruisers Dorsetshire and Cornwall, 320 km (170 nmi; 200 mi) southwest of Ceylon, and sank the two ships. British losses were 424 men killed; 1,120 survivors spent hours in the water.
The Japanese dive bombers scored hits with close to 90% of their bombs—an enviable rate of accuracy, according to Mitsuo Fuchida in Midway]
We may hold inquiries into the actions or negligence of current custodians of power. But past negligence that is not cured but is ‘forgotten’ surfaces when there are ‘foreigners’ against ‘foreigners’ at that place at a certain time. One needs true owners to override the forces of foreigners.
The Sri Lankan governments that unjustly killed believers in the land became ‘foreign forces’ in those parts where the dead believed were their homelands. When they die their ownership power becomes absolute power which their true heirs have the power to invoke.
As per the above account – in 1942, ‘Seven hundred people lost their lives in the attack on Trincomalee’. This is much larger number than the number of dead in the 2019 attack. Yet we do not seem to have learnt from that tragedy. Each time a true owner is unjustly killed – the place acquires negative karma. Likewise when a true owner is celebrated at that place – that is the home of that person – positive karma is acquired by that place.
The deeper we go – the more common we become and the solution shows itself as an inner picture. Hence the saying ‘seek and you shall find’. One must seek without expectations of any material return. The satisfaction from seeking becomes the result. Buddhist governments that override place based ownership – are foreigners to democracy itself. Hence in Sri Lanka – where they interfere directly and/or through the government – with the self-governance of non-Buddhists to whom that area is home – they become foreigners at that place. Likewise militants who claim power beyond their local areas of belief. Once we diffuse such powers or separate ourselves from them – Sri Lanka is paradise on earth to those of us who consider the whole of Sri Lanka as our home.
In the Hindu epic ‘Ramayanam,’ Lord Rama performed the ceremonies needed to clear Sri Lanka and His own country – India of any injustice caused by ‘foreigners’ to those who felt ownership in Sri Lanka. This is believed by Hindus to have happened in Muneeswaram – a Shiva temple North of Colombo. Trincomalee where King Ravana established Koneswaram temple for Lord Shiva – had the power to cause the death (suicide) of the Japanese pilots. Owners have control over their minds. Foreigners are not so protected and hence their minds become weak when desire is stronger than belief. Since truth lives as Energy – such minds are taken over by negative energy at that place or anniversary of a time. The cure is not through current work but through true believers.